Cosmetology School? Yea or Nay? NAY!

Recently, a lovely 20-something Makeup Artist on Facebook posted a status asking:

"Thinking of using my GI Bill to go cosmetology school, being licensed to do makeup will open a WHOLE lot more doors for me professionally, what do you guys think?"

It then sparked an interesting conversation between us because I have such strong feelings about this. Here is how it went:

JJB: I could not disagree more. What working Makeup Artists have you spoken to that have Cosmetology Licenses?

I think you would be wasting time & tuition money. You already have makeup knowledge & talent. The Makeup Industry is not regulated by licensing so you don't NEED it. Getting into unions & getting agency representation are goals to go after & they don't require that you have a Cosmetology License. Cosmetology really does not cover makeup to an extent that would benefit you & your level of experience.

Gain more skill & connections to good career moves by testing. Attend seminars & workshops with brilliant Makeup Artists so that your portfolio is world class. That is what will open doors to assisting TOP INDUSTRY pros on great gigs & that's how to make a name for yourself.

At this point, I wish I had been more aggressive (at your age) about becoming fluent in French, Italian, German, Mandarin, Arabic & Japanese...I'm saying use the GI Bill to advance your GLOBAL APPEAL & let your love of makeup take you around the world.

...while getting paid very well to do something you love so much.

Take good care, & feel free to seek info from me at any time!
If you wish to be a hairstylist, go for it!

MUA: I think what I was trying to say by "opening more doors professionally" was by working at salons (for now) I was doing some job hunting this weekend and I noticed a lot of salons require licensing. Not only that, but I'm not so much focused on beauty courses, more along the lines of learning some theatrical, print, and costume makeup because there's only so much I can teach myself lol Let me know what you think!

Fundamentals of Beauty Make-Up
Studio Hairstyling for the Make-up Artist
Special Make-Up Effects 201: Character Make-Up Artistry
Special Make-Up Effects 301: Lab Techniques

These are just some of the offerings available at Make-Up Designory MUD in Burbank, CA (& NYC)

I just cannot imagine you spending 1700 hours (state of California requirement) getting a Cosmetology License and MOST cosmetology programs spend so few hours on even beauty makeup - let alone theatrical, print & costume make-up as you mentioned you want to explore.

Ask industry veterans like Kevin James Bennett, Crystal Wright, Sam Fine, Tym Buacharern, & Valerie Patrice Hunt. (All on Facebook)

I'd be interested to hear if any of them would direct you to cosmetology school unless you want to be a hairstylist.

You'd get more experience & advance your skills working at a makeup counter.

MUA:  Seriously!! Jennifer thank you so much for researching that for me!! There's only so much I can do on my phone. I should be able to use fafsa and my gi bill, once again thanks!! The classes you just mentioned are exactly what I'm interested in too!!

JJB:  Give them a call to find out for sure, but it looks as if The Make-Up Designory in Burbank, CA accepts GI Bill. I will be attending the NYC Campus (Special Effects - Character Make-Up Artistry for TV/Film) using a FAFSA grant. ;-)
 Link to MUD School Facebook discussion of GI Bill.

MUA:  Well good thing I've already worked at a counter lol thanks Jen, MUD is a school on my list, one of the top actually. Heard a LOT of great things about it, I can't wait to check them out!

____I am such a butt-in-sky! Hopefully I gave her some options to consider. She a very talented Makeup Artist who is destined for success with whatever decision she comes to.

It's the "Auntie" in me ! ;-)

More advice for aspiring makeup artists here
DC area courses for MUAs by TOP industry pros here

Thanks for stopping by & PLEASE feel free to comment with suggestions for this ambitious makeup artist. I will be sure to forward info to her!